Randy Holden - Guitar God


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Randy Holden
Guitar, Vocals

Michael Stuart

Bass, backup vocals

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Sunken Ships 13:31Holden


Recorded 2007 Home Boy Studios
Produced By Randy Holden, co-produced with Eliot
Cover Art & From an Original Oil Painting titled "Cristo" by Ruth Mayer



Most often lyrics are either straight forward, or left to the listener to decipher. I thought the listener would benefit more directly from prose written from behind the scenes, beyond poetic license.

There may have been a time it served the purpose of Cool to disguise meaning of lyric, that made it Cool when someone figured out what it meant, and the underground traffic shared the brilliance of the author e.g. when Bob Dylan wrote "she wore an Egyptian ring that sparkles before she speaks" ... had someone not explained to me what that meant I would have lost so much interest in the music that went with the otherwise great lyric, I would have never cared what the lyric was, much less what it meant. Wouldn't surprise me a lot of listeners still would not know what that lyric line was, or meant - unless maybe if you were among the super brilliant cool, who were regenerated out of the lost to the past beatnik era, when cool became cool, to the folks who missed out on Marlon Brando's version of Hell's Angel's circa 1955.

Most often the poet allows the freedom of the listener to interpret the meaning of the poetry, but so often in contemporary times, it seems the meaning of the poet is lost to the din of the, aberrations of commerce grinding out its version of poetic cool selling kitchen sink insurance, wherein resides death of poetic thought. I thought it a non-evil to provide some pre-publication, to the tale the theater of the music is about, so that it not be lost upon the listener.

Just in case If there be many like myself, who rarely understood what most poetic sense in lyric, meant, for reasons I recognized, I understood sound more than I understood enunciation. It came, as quite a surprise after four decades of wandering in the wilderness human primordial sounds to, learn "who on earth Monises was, and what glory it was that he saw". After all, there seemed to, be no literature anywhere in history who talked about this character "Monises". When they sang of, "Monises seeing the glory of the coming of the lord". This guy was missing from the history books, When the light went on that Monises wasn't the name of the character in a famous story, but were, instead the image in the eyes of the song writer in first person who intended the lyric content, or use in the second person ... I realized it wasn't Monises who was missing - it was me who was, Missing. I stepped back deeper in realization I didn't hear words, I heard Sounds. ,

The idea that "Mine-eyes-have seen the glory" was a revelation. The result was most interesting. to learn I thought something very different than the author intended.

You might Call it an atonal perspective for verbal content of lyric.

When I wrote lyrics earlier on, and esoteric thought has a continually discoverable meaning,it did more than I thought. Trying to accomplish that meant I had to find a place of honest, and innocent consciousness if the concept was to have a chance of succeeding what it was attempting. I would do two things. First would be to place thought in as empty a space I could form, by closing out all thought of influence, then second, I would utter Sounds that did not have meaning. Then I would look on the sounds and see what words the sounds felt like, and form those words as lyric line, then see if the line made any kind of sense, and build on that. It was an unusual way to go about writing lyric to a piece of music, but in my mind I believed it was a more honest form of discovering secrets within, from the subconscious. Most of the time it was a difficult exercise ... made even more difficult by the problem that, most of the time I did not understand what the lyric meant myself, or at least in context with content. That didn't mean I didn't try to make sense out of lyric, or make an effort to be topically meaningful, but that all came more difficult for me.

There was a song I wrote that took literally 35 years before I actually understood the meaning of the lyric ... because it came so directly from my subconscious, I had no way to interpret it into a complete meaning ... I was always quite unsure of what the lyric meant, except the one certainty I did have was there was a meaning, I just did not know consciously what it was.

For me, writing lyric that meant something, if I was approaching it in its purest sense, was like attempting to write the meaning of a dream while the dream was happening ... The title that came to me for the song even sounded silly, if not downright goofy, I was not able to explain what I understood at the time, other than to know the meaning was very deep, and while even clumsy in terms of poetic sense ... I somehow felt there was a message within it that even made gave clumsy a sense of dignity by its humanity ... eventually I came to understand it was a meaning of Love that is too often a repeated story ... terrifically Sweet, but terribly Cold ... that described the entirety of the Natural World in a neutral poetic sense ... I suspect no one to this day consciously understands what the song was truly about ... while what I came to finally understand from the subconscious was ... a vividly accurate description of one of the disparate faces of Love.

Having had the secret revealed to me, it also gave me a deeper understanding of an audience that the song reached that surprised me ... it very much touched those who deal with some of the most complex emotions they have difficulty translating and interpreting themselves, but are no less real and vivid and meaningful, at levels they know are Truth in often the most simplistic ways that transcend so much gibberish that veils itself in cloth it calls truth but that is nothing more than a lie that is true, only because it is a lie, not because the lie is the truth, and not because the truth is a lie ...but because a lie is a lie, and because it is a lie, it is made to become a true lie, which can never rise to any level of what truth itself is, except to become revealed as a lie that has been created to conceal and bury truth itself, and become the impostor reality. No less real mind you, but no less impostor either.

Having given enough definition to the cause for a need to address the meaning of the poetic sense ... the danger of not interpreting the poetic sense is that of allowing its meaning to be abandoned, hidden, obscured, never to come to light of day that the beauty of its meaning never be known ...

For that cause I've decided it to be an imperative to tell the story within the poetic content of the sense made within the poetic persuasion of the story ... and bring the depth of the meaning to the imagination of the listener, to have an opportunity to become one with the reality of those faced and confronted with realities of life that many never have any understanding of ... the objective is to cause ones life to be the richer for it ...



Sailing ships upon the sea, Rivers of the heart run free, like heaven ...
Thought I heard, a gallant word, as we sailed into the night called never ...

She fly aaahhh aaahhh ss on the water
She fly aaahhh aaahhh ss on the sea

A voice it said, we may be dead, sky's so red, looks that way never ...
un-belongs to those, who never fall, in the mirror ...

She fly aaahhh aaahhh ss on the water
She fly aaahhh aaahhh ss on the sea

Then I saw a Dragon's claw, rip away our main, take us under ...
Screamin wind, we said Amen, Never saw the land ...

... again ...

Now we fly aaahhh aaahhh ss on the water
Now we fly aaahhh aaahhh ss on the sea

If you ever come this way, pray you never see the day, she finds you ...
With another love, that you call, you fall into the mirror ...

She Cries aaahhh aaahhh ss on the water
She Cries aaahhh aaahhh ss on the sea


SUNKEN SHIPS ... is a story of men ships the sea and their love, and conflicts of loves therein, and ends ... The Sea is a jealous Mistress whom all men are seduced by in one manner or another. The Sea has always been She ... from time immemorial, no matter the God Neptune claims to be her ruler, for that is only so long as she permits ... and the way you know this is knowing his story is new compared to hers, and his will fade long before hers will ever end ...

Men have turned to march with a militance to her endless rhythm entranced unable, and unwilling to release themselves or be released from her hypnotic spell ... once she has you, she does not let go ... the beauty of her grace is more compelling than any force on earth as she is the jealous mistress ... as is no other ...

The first verse sings of the incredible Freedom felt upon the sea ... so free, nothing compares but a thought of what Heaven may feel as ...

Then comes "Gallantry" ... for it takes a Gallant nature to stride upon the sea, yet while at the same, when the Night bears down with nothing but its blackness ... and in the day of sails, when storms were sensed more than explainable ... it can feel like it may Never end ... it becomes Never ...

The second verse is the sense of Fear, and pending storm, so great, so unseen before, none who have been here have seen it before ... then ... the close of the second verse tells "this does not belong to those who never fall into the mirror" ... "Un-belongs" ... to those to whom it does Belong, and are those who have Fallen into the Mirror ... that is the place they have gazed upon the eyes of the sea when it was glass, and saw themselves, and all its reflections, and were so seduced they followed her seduction ... and find them selves Belonging to her, Owned by her ... when her turns against them ...

The third verse is the height of the Great Tempest, a great wave becomes the power of a Dragons Claw, that rips away the Mainsail, and its mast, and Takes the ship Under ... That the close of the third verse sings of the wind that came, and how men Pray when they find such a thing upon them ... finding they never see land again ... they have succumbed to the great temptress the sea ...

The forth verse is the warning ... for all who become seduced, to pray they not find themselves at her merci- lessness at her Most Jealous Wrath ... when they are confronted torn betwixt two Loves ... the Love of a woman upon land, and their Love of the sea who is She, who when she finds your heart torn with fear for the love of the woman upon the land, the sea will tear the heart out from your soul, and have her way with you, and take you away ... tolerating No Other Love other than for her ... with the ending moral to the story being ...

A story of all those unto whom the sea was a jealous lover who took away their lives, who were of broken heart to know they would never again be held or hold their Other Love, in the woman of the land ... and this division of love and broken heart be the curse to prevent them from surrendering unto the sea in deepest love with her Alone ... that is the gravest cause to pray never to be found by her "Calling the Name of Another Love than Her ...

Such is the meaning of the story of Sunken Ships ... part romanticist, in other part, realist ... having sailed the great globe in what would be considered a small craft, only 60' large by some measures, but it is truly small on the face of the sea.

While the music itself portrays the subtlety of thunderous rhythm while when the tempest begins to break, the certainty turns to uncertainty when the time signature becomes a 15/16 measure ... (I doubt if ever that time count has been done before in music, or at least not that I've ever heard ... it was a complication to calculate and I only thought to calculate it for the sake of knowing what it was, as the music created to it was felt, not needing technical support to understand what I was actually doing. It was interesting to figure out though, from the technical point of view.

The song shifts into and out of the 15/16 from and then returns to 4/4 without recognizing where one began and the other left off, making it interesting for the subtlety.

As the instrumental progresses, then comes upon the ship three great overwhelming seas, closing over the ship, and afterward causing it to be rolled over and over down the face of the third great sea, to under she goes, penduling to the bottom ...

An Emotional experience directly related to Love as the emotional experience and our identity with the worlds our lives reside in complex collision with our hearts ... so is, and so closes the story of "Sunken Ships".




I am in the clouds, My feet on the ground
I am forever, flying, higher, and higher


I am in the clouds, My feet on the ground
I am forever, flying, higher, and higher

yeah Gotta get a Raptor
Oh I wanna Raptor like a hurricane

Gotta get a Raptor
Oh I wanna Raptor like a hurricane
Gotta get a Raptor
You know I'm like want a Raptor and you won't see me again

Hurricane, hurr ... rricane
Woo hoo
uuuh huh

Gotta have a Raptor
Oh I want a Raptor like a hurricane
You know I'm like a Raptor and you won't see me again
Gotta have a Raptor and you won't see me again

Bridge Verse: (preaching)

She wept over you
She wept in the night for the souls of you
Covered by the Dark
Swept away in the arms of God

Ezekiel 1:14 and they ran, as the appearance of a flash of lightening
Ezekiel 1:24 their wings were like the noise of a loin
Revelations 4:4 round about the throne sat four and twenty elders, clothed in white, crowns of gold;
these are time, and the hours of the day, as is the seven spirits of God who cast down their crowns
and say "For thy pleasure, all things are, and were created" ...


I am in the clouds, My feet on the ground
I am forever, flying, higher, and higher


While the opening guitar echos a natural ring, reminiscent of ominous bells, of the note structure, the flavor sets an appropriate emotional stage for whats to come. The Raptor Verse, guitar section of the song was a piece that was in progress for the followup to the original Population II album, although the lyric was quite different at that time. It resided in a distant closet of my mind ever since. Its voice only began speaking to my inner mind in the pause of other more recent inspirations whose intensity blew a hot breath of creation upon thoughts long passed into the present. The bridge change with the melodically interesting E minor, C, D chord structure was part of another song also in progress at that earlier time, tentatively titled as "Fallen Angel", to be on the same followup album.

Then from the blue universe, a call. The "Distinguished Flying Cross Society" thought to commission a painting from my wife to commemorate their history. For those not familiar with the "DFCS"; they are a a part of American History. Those few brave souls who have a sense of daring, along with a willfulness to place themselves in harms way, placing the lives of others above their own. The first Distinguished Flying Cross recipient was "Charles Lindbergh", "Amelia Ayrehart" was another. These are among the most well known names. Usually they are military pilots who have committed extraordinary acts of courage under the most unlikely circumstances for survival, and thought only of coming to the aid of others, without a of fear for their own life.

The request led to several meetings with several of them who are alive, and hero's today. They turned out to be some of the most fun serious, sincere, straight forward honest, good humored, humble, incredible individuals I have ever had the privilege, and honor to meet and come to know in my life. The stories they have to tell are nothing short of the things movies are made of.

But ... there is something else within these men and women ... besides a genuiness, and honesty that is never absent, there is a certain Spirit of a complete Love of Flying ... They Love to Fly when one of them told me stories of his training for being shot at with SAM missiles in the Vietnam war, the story went like this from the instructor ... "There is nothing we can teach you about the tactical maneuvers necessary to get out of the way of a SAM missile ... You will Know it when you see a telephone pole coming at you at 200 mph" ... then Chuck Sweeney, who was telling the story, busted out laughing so hard I thought we'd both fall over. He continued, "that's how you knew, and you either figured out you better do something, or you are history! Many of those guys were taken out by those things, and he said he dodged several ... he learned how to do an instant roll at 500 mph which when calculated with the speed of the missile coming for you, was 700 mph split second mental calculating.

These people Love flying, All of them. Its what they all have in common. They would surrender their life to flight to be able to do what human kind has dreamt of doing for millennia. Their stories are endless, except for a common sense of that which is great is the ordinary ... They have a sense of what being among the Angelic means ...

This was a New inspiration that became the influence for the lyric for the song "Raptor" ... but there is even greater influence.

The "Raptor" F-22 is the most sophisticated state of the art aircraft ever developed by technology. The capabilities are greater than a human body has the tolerance for. The level technology has risen to has edged itself to stand within the pages of the ancient script e.g. biblical passages of Ezeikel whose visions more closely parallel with the present than of his own time. The appearances of such images fall largely in the realm of the imagination regardless of time, but provide a material essence that strikes inspirational chords that give meaning to both past and future tense of the intensity of passion toward ones own presence, within ... call it ... God's creation ...

The lyric lent itself to the present and the past with inspired passages of biblical text as they relate to extreme emotional images, and those as technology that has never been seen before in the recorded history of the human creature. The lyric content directly borrowed from relative biblical references, describe an array of emotions as vivid as extreme flight in a "Raptor" may be to those who actually Fly it. Who is not able to relate to the spirit within those souls who thrill in the pursuit of ... Higher, Faster, Higher, Faster, ... is the dream we are all made of.

Every time I see a spire at the pinnicle of every church, I'm reminded of a rocket, with its star at its top a distant menory where we came from, everyone desires to return to. While there was a tribe in New Guinea in WW II period who never saw an airplane, until a plane flew overhead dropping food to them, they believed it was God. In the desire to reach to the sky and communicate with God, and persuade God to return, they made a copy of the airplane from sticks and plant leaves that was so identical to the plane they saw, those to come were astonished. The parallel between the stone age, and the modern was the same wish to reach to the sky in pursuit of the inspiration to be with the highest of high. The desire of humanity has not changed.

To possess the desire to pilot the most fantastic aircraft ever devised, and control the sheer power they wield, and the speed with which they carry it, surely places them in the skies where they become as winged angels. The biblical references, have a relative place to divine what this experience is, and the sense of humanity upon the earth. To imagine what it must feel to be in their space, for a time enough to be aware of the awesome grace of such a time space machine, staggers the imagination. If ever there was a need for a spiritual cause to be made clear in the purpose of all things, one line from Revelation stands out as a divine statement saying ... ... "all things are and were created for thy pleasure" ... one begins to be humbled in order to gain understanding, while the same time as being passionate in the endth degree. The sheer skill required to handle such a craft is a thing worthy of admiration, in its own right ... or better ... call it righteousness.

While these amazing individuals may not be able to fly on the craft of the pick and string, as I wished I could fly as they do in their amazing machines, none the less we all fly just the same, and that is what its all about tuning in on the same wavelength vibration, where we all love making waves ... put another way ... you may not recognize you're in a boat unless you Rock it. By All means then ... Rock it !



When I wrote "Tarantula", it Felt like Tarantula ... it bothered me sub-consciously for a long time that I kept thinking in terms old school terms that it seemed like it could be the next big dance craze. Fits of visions of commercial insanity plagued my sense of Art. It began to emerge to conscious that there is Always a deeper meaning than the superficial to everything. My thoughts began to change direction with some sense. I knew there was a strong rhythmic drive to the song, at the same time I had a feeling there was a strong emotional drive attached to Tarantula that had to be more than a word, and a big spider, although that is great stuff for a young mind who gets thrills and chills from B rated movies, but that was not enough to give actual broad meaning to what the music felt like.

I began looking into what I felt, and what an amazing tool the internet is for Knowledge ... as it turned out the word, Tarantula is derived from a small village in Italy named "Taranta". It further turns out, Many songs have been written across the span of history about Taranta ... from classical music, to folk songs, to even "Pop goes the Weasel" (that conjures up a vision of a weasels reaction to being surprised by a giant spider, and the comedy of such a scene ... as it further turns out ... there is a very large hairy spider that lives in the special area of Taranta". Its a Wolf Spider, and not a true Tarantula, but that is the origin of the name of the "Tarantula" spider. An even more interesting part of the story is, when a person was bitten by the Tarantula Wolf Spider, the entire village of Tarante threw an all night Dance Party. The purpose of the Dance was to keep the blood of the smitten victim circulating, to work out the Fever the poison of the bite caused, and kept the bitten one alive by Dancing all night long ...

It was the match I was looking for that made the story of the rhythm of the song complete. It was also the mystery that all came together in the connection to the religious aspect of the Life and Death struggle, and the approach to suffering the village attitude took in what became an event to be Very Seriously Festive. There was also the connection to the Islamic influence upon Italy, having suffered invasion from Islam, and its leaving the scars of its complex societal design, in its God and its Art design joining diverse patterns of worship, and enunciation of diverse passions of musical orthodox and improvisation within the orthodoxy of the musical image left by Islam. All of it tied together to create the lyrics that would explain the musical composition of the music at a level of depth, further plumbed than the mere mortality of a new dance craze of faded pop culture.

The theater behind the music, in the story of the origins of the name "Tarantula" has added to the incredible history od a Dance Song that has had musical compositions composed for centuries about it. This one is merely the latest in that long history.

I discovered the satisfaction I was looking for to interpret the meaning of the music that I Knew was present, and all I had to do was Find it, and that was completion, of satisfaction I was looking for, maybe longing.

While the lyric is simplistic, its that which bears the story, once you know what its story is.




She got the Fever ... Dance all night long ...
She got ... Fever ...
Dance all night long ...

tchhaaaaa She got the fever ... Dance all night long
She got the fever ... Dance all night long
Tarantula ...

(melodic vocalizations)

She got ...
Fever ... Dance all night long
She got the fever ... Dance all night long

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